Having lived in Scousely for nearly ten years, it is always a pleasure to go back, particularly when the attraction of drinking in one of the finest boozing cities in England is enhanced by seeing old friends. My mate John emigrated to Australia nine years ago and when he comes "home", we always get together along with another mate Mike. We worked together many moons ago and the attraction of a reunion and chewing over old times never wanes. Along to act as referee was the lovely E, who knows all of us of old.
We met in the Doctor Duncan
, a Cains tied house which was rather quiet, being one of the few pubs that didn't have the FA Cup Final (featuring Everton) on. Cain's Mild
was cool, creamy and moreish and for me, easily the best beer of the day. Mike had the bitter, E had the IPA and both were pronounced good and John surprised us all (he's a Toohey's New
man now) by ordering bitter too, reminding us all of the countless pints of Higsons
we consumed back in the day.
Now I could go on about this beer and that, but I won't. It wasn't about the beer. We moved next to the re-opened Vernon Arms
watching Liverpudlians support Chelsea and drinking beer from an old pal of mine, Mike McGinley of Betwixt Brewery
which I will mention. Betwixt Sunlight
was pale and golden with a delicious biscuity nose, but a lot too heavy on the crystal malt and light on the hop to demand another. Amid searing reminiscences, bickering, nostalgia and raucous laughter, we moved on to Rigby's
for Manx beers, The Lady of Mann
for more Manx beers, The Lion
for very tasteless Youngs
and the final stop at the Ship and Mitre
where Lees, Paulaner, Veltins and other stuff was drunk. Oh and I had a couple of pints of Hoegaarden
too, possibly in the Vernon Arms.
We tottered out of there very much the worse for wear and back to Lime St for our train. I had hiccups all the way back to Manchester and we were both starving, food having been overlooked. Today I had a hell of a hangover which is still lingering. As I said, it wasn't about the beer.